Monday, April 21, 2008


Zoe has been complaining about an earache but she didn't have a fever and it doesn't hurt all the time. I took her to the Pediatrician and she said her ears looked perfect, no infection. We talked for a little while about what else it could be and the Dr. thinks it is TMJ. She has always been a teeth grinder when she sleeps, and she also clenches her jaw a lot while she's sleeping. I guess a lot of people with TMJ think that it is their ear that is hurting because it is so close to the jaw joint. I made her an appointment with the dentist, so we will just have to wait and see what he says. Right now she needs to sleep with a football type mouth guard, and if she has pain we give her Motrin. It is supposed to work better than Tylenol for this because it is an anti-inflammatory. If anyone has any experience with this please let me know. Thanks.

Update: Zoe's Dentist agreed that it is the TMJ thing. She has to try a new mouth guard to sleep with, and she is not supposed to chew gum, or eat anything that makes her jaws work hard, like well done steak or chewy candies. I need to keep a journal on when she has pain in her jaw, ears, neck, or back. It hasn't bothered her for the last few days, so hopefully she won't have any. She has another check-up in 2 weeks, and then the Dentist will decide if she needs to see a specialist.


Amelia said...

Lynda! You could really make a long list of all the random conditions in your family...just this week...twisty ear canals and TMJ! ...I can look up TMJ and learn a little more, but I'm sorry...I really don't know much about it :(

Monica said...

Zoe is so much like me - I have TMJ too. I use to grind my teeth really bad as a kid and I wore the football mouthgaurd too. In high school I upgraded to a retainer that protected my teeth at night.

I still find myself clinching my jaw - which leads to my mouth, ear & head hurting. I've had to learn to relax my jaw. Poor baby, but the mouthguard should help!

lynda said...

Thanks Monica. I didn't know you had that. She has a dentist appt. today so we'll see what he says.